Trilogy in the Making

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The trilogy is an ancient form. The first extant trilogy is almost 2500 years old: Aeschylus’ Oresteia, first performed in Athens 458 BCE. Recent explorations in multiplicities or serialities include Stephen Henderson’s The Hollywood Sequel (2014), Perkins and Verevis’ edited collection Film Trilogies (2012) and Carolyn Jess-Cooke’s Film Sequels (2009). However, despite the form’s age and recent studies made of it, studying the trilogy as a specific type of narrative structure has not been established, particularly from the point of view of the creative practitioner. A trilogy, by definition, is a group of three related works such as plays, novels or films. Trilogy is often compared to other forms of multi-text narrative such as the three-volume novel, threequel or a triptych. Conflating trilogy with these forms leads to the structure either being assumed, dismissed or misunderstood. In this research, I propose trilogy structure as comprising four texts: three individual narratives, and a fourth unifying narrative, that is a text in and of itself. Accordingly, this PhD is a creative practice examination of the specific act of trilogy creation, drawing on examples from novels, films and plays, and the development of my trilogy narrative, The Story of Eorthan. I investigate the trilogy form’s fundamental structure framed through my journey as a trilogy creator, from practitioner to practitioner-researcher. Such a creative practice approach to trilogy adds originality to recent literature in the field of multiplicities or serialities.
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